Look into activities of missionaries, legislative committee tells officials

Congress MLC PR Ramesh, who is a committee member, said they are giving a lot of emphasis on conversions. “They want to take political mileage out of it.
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai in conversation with Admar Mutt seer Sri Vishwapriya Theertha Swami after laying the foundation for a new sciene block at Poornaprajna College in Udupi.
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai in conversation with Admar Mutt seer Sri Vishwapriya Theertha Swami after laying the foundation for a new sciene block at Poornaprajna College in Udupi.

BENGALURU: Even as the government contemplates bringing a stringent law to prevent forcible religious conversions, the State Legislative Committee on Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare has directed officials to give a report on the working of Christian missionaries in the districts. The move was slammed by the Opposition Congress and JDS.

Congress MLC PR Ramesh, who is a committee member, said they are giving a lot of emphasis on conversions. “They want to take political mileage out of it. In the meeting, I told them not to mislead people. They should have humanity and follow the Constitution and Legislature,” Ramesh said.

In the absence of the Committee chairman Dinakar Keshav Shetty, BJP MLA Gulihatti Shekar had chaired the meeting on Wednesday. The officials were directed to give a report on the functioning of unauthorised missionaries in the state. Police and Law Department officials also attended the meeting.

In the last Assembly session, Shekar had alleged that a large number of people in his constituency were forcibly converted to Christianity, and had urged the government to take steps to stop it.  JDS MLC BM Farooq, a member of the committee, said, “All these issues should be discussed in the Legislature and Parliament. As a committee, we do not have any such power.” Farooq said he walked out of the meeting when they suggested that the committee members should visit churches on Sunday.

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